Washington, DC – State Department head Hillary Clinton announced Jan. 17 that the U.S. was extending formal recognition to the government of Somalia. The announcement took place during a visit of the Western-backed Somali president, Hassan Sheikh, to Washington D.C.
In a fawning speech, President Sheikh said the “United States has always been the country that never left Somalia and have been engaging Somalia with difficult times at different levels, including when the existence of Somali nation was threatened in early 90s…Had that intervention not been there, it would have been difficult and different today, the situation in Somalia. So that relationship is there and the commitment and the unwavering support of the United States has always been.”
The Somali regime used to be known as the Transitional Federal Government (TFG). The TFG was formed in a Kenyan hotel and was later backed up by the U.S.-approved Ethiopian invasion of Somalia. It is now kept in power by troops from the African Union.
Secretary of State Clinton admitted the importance of the U.S. role in Somalia, stating, “We provided more than $650 million in assistance to the African Union Mission in Somalia, more than $130 million to Somalia’s security forces.”
The U.S. also provided air support to Ethiopian troops in Somalia, has repeatedly launched drone attacks on resistance forces, and at times has used food as a weapon.